‘They Tried To Bury Us; They Didn’t Know We Were Seeds’

Intergenerational Memory and La casa

in European Comic Art
Sarah D. HarrisBennington College sharris@bennington.edu

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In using metaphors including trees, food, land and house to invoke the power of intergenerational memory, Paco Roca’s La casa (2015) shifts a national obsession with memory to an intimate scale. The book’s intimacy invites reconsideration of notions of ‘giving voice’ and ‘sites of memory’ that several other recent and groundbreaking Spanish comics have explored. This article situates the visual and verbal metaphors in La casa within the larger context of comics and memory, and the consistent attention to memory in Roca’s oeuvre. The characters’ discussions about tending to the land they have inherited, especially via Roca’s impeccably sophisticated use of the medium, demand that we tend to a new generation taking up its ancestors’ struggles, including the silent struggles of a repressed (or buried) generation.

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